YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

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YBB Capital
4 months ago
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近期随着BTC现货ETF的通过,市场热情逐渐推向顶点。以铭文和Solana社区为首的MEME Coin再度席卷而来,各种千倍、万倍的暴富神话在社交媒体疯狂刷屏,踏空行情的散户开始不断涌入市场。那么近期的MEME Coin与过去有那些不一样呢?土狗满天飞的市场下又该怎么选到一个具备潜力的MEME Coin?

Original author: YBB Capital Researcher Zeke

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

Preface

Recently, with the passage of the BTC spot ETF, market enthusiasm has gradually reached its peak. MEME Coin, led by the Inscription and Solana communities, is once again sweeping the market. Various myths of getting rich a thousand times or ten thousand times are flooding the social media, and retail investors who are short on the market are beginning to pour into the market.

So what are the differences between the recent MEME Coin and the past? How to choose a MEME Coin with potential in a market full of locals?

What is MEME Coin?

The concept of MEME was first proposed by British evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book The Selfish Gene. Dawkins uses the term MEME to describe those units of information that, like genes, are passed through culture through transmission from person to person. His purpose was to explain how to understand the process of cultural transmission, similar to the way genes are transmitted in biology. If the basic unit of biological evolution and reproduction relies on the inheritance of genes, then the basic unit of inheritance of cultural ideas is MEME. Its form is changeable, it can be a sentence, a story, an allusion, a picture. As long as it can carry a certain carrier of cultural thoughts, it can be called MEME.

Although the word MEME was a relatively serious academic concept when it was first proposed, after entering the Internet era, the flowering of a hundred flowers of various online prank cultures needed a suitable noun to collectively refer to it, so the word MEME was used to a certain extent. Reconstructed, it has become a collective name for this type of Internet prank culture. To put it more groundedly, MEME can also correspond to memes in Chinese Internet culture.

The so-called MEME Coin is actually, as the name suggests, a cryptocurrency based on MEME culture. The earliest MEME Coin is usually considered to be Dogecoin. Dogecoin is a spoof token created in 2013 by Billy Markus and Jackson Palmer by copying the Litecoin code and adding a Shiba Inu emoticon as a mockery of BTC (They think BTC is just air). But the subsequent development was even more ironic. Not only did Dogecoin not become a worthless air token, it was also crazily sought after by Reddit (a well-known foreign forum). The richest man Musk said, Dogecoin may be my most popular currency. Love cryptocurrencies, it’s cool.” It also made it “To Da Moon.” The market value of Dogecoin began to skyrocket. So far, an air coin born out of a nonsensical joke has become a legend among the top ten in the crypto market with a market value of hundreds of billions.

The MEMEs that are going to be hot in 2023

In the 21 years since Dogecoin rushed to the moon, various imitation tokens with animal pictures have sprung up, all hoping to become the next Dogecoin. At that time, the community had a very interesting name for these tokens. ——Zoo Coin. But only a handful of outstanding ones survived, such as Shib and Floki, the more popular MEME Coins, while the remaining 99% of “zoo coins” basically disappeared into thin air in the subsequent bear market. From this point of view, choosing a MEME Coin that can become Dogecoin seems to be no less than finding a needle in a haystack. So how should you choose a MEME Coin that seems to have no fundamentals to analyze? How to change our thinking in a new bull market started by Inscription? We might as well first look back at the common points and innovations of MEME Coin (selected from some of the tokens that impressed me) that were still impressive in the bear market over the past 23 years.

PEPE

The character Pepe the Frog (PEPE) was created by American cartoonist Matt Furie in 2005 for his comic Boys Club. Although the funny MEME image of this frog-headed man has been widely used on Western social networks is an evergreen tree, but there has never been a matching PEPE Coin in the MEME track (in fact, the currently well-known PEPE token is not the earliest, but other PEPEs have not been marketed). On April 4, 2023, a Twitter account named pepecoineth posted a meme of PEPE wearing a hat, but no new tweets were posted for the next ten days.

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

When the next tweet was published on April 14, the creation of PEPE Coin, Telegram group and official webpage (the domain name pepe.vip was bought as early as March) was directly announced. On April 16, two days after the token was released (two days need to be allowed for insiders to buy), some big Vs on Twitter suddenly began to promote PEPE Coin. In the following two days, the price of PEPE token and the number of fans increased. A surge began. After attracting the first wave of traffic, PEPE’s official Twitter also began to cooperate with the increase in token prices and frequently posted emoticons mocking other MEME Coins to continue to build momentum. On April 18, Shaurya Malwa, the leader of Coindesks Asia data team, published a short report titled Pepe the Frog Meme Coins Rocket as Crypto Twitter Moves Over Dogecoin Obsession, PEPE once again received a lot of exposure. Just one day later, on April 19, some first- and second-tier exchanges began to publish Frog-related tweets and votes, and many of them even listed PEPE directly online.

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

Then PEPEs road to the moon began to be unstoppable. Compared with the two Shiba Inu predecessors who took several years to achieve success, PEPEs carefully planned only took 4 days to become an instant hit. Within a few months, it reached an astonishing increase of up to 375,000 times.

Silly Dragon (organized here into Review of Silly Dragon Sillys Ten Thousand Times Journey)

Silly Dragon is a MEME Coin that took off with the resurgence of Solana, and now the silly dragon has become a spiritual symbol within the community. Talking about the origin of this silly dragon, at the Solana Breakpoint Summit on October 30, 2023, Solana co-created Anatoly appeared on stage wearing a Western green doll dragon costume. Anatoly first laughed at himself for being a silly dragon. Another insightful explanation of the outfit: Im standing here wearing a dragon suit, which is crucial to our discussion of what were building and why were building it. We need to know what our goals are and what exactly we want to achieve.

For Solana, who has risen from the ashes under the hardships of the bear market, this silly dragon seems to have many special meanings. Twenty days after the summit, a Twitter user named DrakoSolana posted his first tweet, which was a silly dragon avatar adapted from a MEME picture. DrakoSolana gained a lot of attention under this trend, but unfortunately, although DrakoSolana was the first Silly Dragon on Twitter, due to the delay in the launch of the token, an account named Silly Dragon preempted it. machine.

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

Silly Dragon did not have an advantage in terms of initial attention and tweet release time, but by coincidence, they were the first to release their own token SILLY. After the token was released, Silly Dragons popularity began to overtake it quickly, with the support of huge traffic. , Silly Dragon strikes while the iron is hot and holds the Silly Dragon Art Contest.

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

It was during this event that Silly Dragon attracted the attention of Anatoly. Although the token price did not take off at this time, on December 16, Anatoly posted a tweet on Twitter: Silly Dragon is urgently needed. MEME emoticon package, Samsung and Apple have 1 billion device sales, while Solana mobile phone only has 20,000. This tweet instantly ignited the enthusiasm of the community, and the price of SILLY also began to skyrocket, becoming a new ten thousand times myth.

Harry Potter Obama Sonic 10 Inu

This may be the coin with the longest name you have ever seen, Harry Potter Obama Sonic 10 Inu (because the name is so ridiculously long, I will replace it with HPOS 1 I below, but their own token name is Bitcoin). The coin’s name highlights its prank nature, and of course the name is not the only one that is outrageous. HPOS 1 I became popular on the Internet with an extremely crude spoof webpage when the token was deployed on May 10, 2023. The project team filled the webpage with spoofs of Harry Potter, former US President Obama, Sonic ( A video, picture, or parody story with elements such as the protagonist of a well-known parkour game), cryptocurrency, the Illuminati, etc. It can be said that it directly hits various classic hot topics on Western social networks.

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

The development of HPOS 1 I is also very unique in that ownership of the project has been relinquished and there are no developers at all, with its community taking the lead. This is also one of the unique selling points of the project, a development approach purely based on the communitys meme culture of parody. While various MEME pictures in the community spread crazily on social networks, the price of HPOS 1 I also climbed step by step, reaching a peak of $0.1783 in August 2022, achieving a 100-fold miraculous achievement in the bear market.

Pogai

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

The most ridiculous emoji in history, the sluttiest panda, and the youthful years we miss the most are the slogans from Pogai. Its image is the most familiar Pandaren in our Chinese Internet circles. It is a token with no fee, no copyright, and no development route. It is only a purely community-driven project. The community can decide the future direction, and all tokens are dispersed. The founder only leaves 100 million Pogai tokens to work with the community to make fools of the Panda family.

The project team used a sultry and humorous promotion method to continuously hit the Chinese Twitter circle at the time. Coupled with the familiar panda head emoticon package, it was impressive. The project was issued on May 2, 2023, with an issue price of $0.000008 and a maximum price of $0.0005. Although there is not as exaggerated increase as other MEME Coins, the token is still impressive.

SATS

In December 2022, Bitcoin developer Casey Rodarmor released an open source software called ORD, which runs on Bitcoin Core software. ORD allows users to mint Bitcoin inscriptions in two steps: enter arbitrary information, such as a string of text or an image (inscription) on the Bitcoin blockchain, and connect the uploaded inscription to a specific Satoshi. Satoshi is the smallest unit of Bitcoin. 1 BTC = 100,000,000 satoshi. The final product is a Satoshi with an inscription, also known as Bitcoin Inscription.

Depending on whether the input information is text or an image, Bitcoin inscriptions can be divided into two categories. The main use of text-based inscriptions is to create tokens, such as the BRC-20 standard. Image-based inscriptions are mainly used to create NFTs, such as various cartoon images.

SATS is a MEME inscription issued based on the BRC 20 standard (I personally like to call the inscription a detachable text NFT, but now there is a more accurate name for the inscription, that is, semi-fungible token, semi-homogeneous Token), whose full name is Satoshi, is the smallest unit of Bitcoin, often referred to as Satoshi, or Satoshi Nakamoto. 1 BTC is equivalent to 100 million satoshis, and the total supply is 2100 trillion, which is equivalent to 21 million BTCs.

The minting process of SATS lasted nearly half a year. The inscription was deployed on the blockchain in March and was completely minted in September, which is different from the prank culture and rebellious culture of traditional MEME Coin. SATS is very special because it means Satoshi or Satoshi Nakamoto (the basic unit of Bitcoin and the founder of Bitcoin), and the total amount corresponds to the total amount of BTC. It has the deep meaning of paying tribute to BTC and commemorating Satoshi Nakamoto. The fact that a huge amount can be minted also reflects the strength of the inscription consensus. The popularity after SATS intensified. On December 12, 2023, the day Binance was listed, the market value doubled, once soaring to 1.15 billion US dollars, even surpassing the first inscription ORDI, and finally reached a maximum increase of 25,000 times. .

Diversification of MEME Coin

Judging from the above MEME Coin, it is not difficult to find that MEME Coin has shifted from the zoo imitation market dominated by dogs in the past to a more diversified development direction. The current categories can be divided into the following four categories:

1. Classic MEME: Tokenization of some classic MEME images represented by PEPE and Pogai. There are many classic MEME images that have not yet been tokenized or have not been successfully tokenized, such as Trollface, Grumpy Cat, Success Kid, Kermit the Frog;

2. Crypto-native MEME: Some MEMEs from crypto-native “memes” represented by BONK and Silly Dragon, both of which come from the Solana community. There are also some imitated MEME Coins, such as Polygon’s “Polygon Dragon”;

3. Inscription MEME: Inscription MEME represented by SATS and RATS. Due to the special distribution method of inscriptions, this type of MEME does not even have a picture image, but uses text as a carrier. Most of them have tribute, commemoration and ironic meanings. For example, SATS pays tribute to BTC and Satoshi Nakamoto (which can also be regarded as the native culture of encryption), and RATS has ironic meanings for rat warehouses and exchanges;

4. Original MEME: MEME represented by the original style of HPOS 1 I and Ladys is different from the simple imitation of MEME Coin in the past. This type of MEME Coin has its own original style.

What elements are needed for MEME Coin to be successful?

How to judge whether a MEME Coin can be successful is actually a very difficult thing. As a product of prank culture, MEME Coin always has different opinions on the source of its value. I personally believe that the success of MEME Coin comes from cultural identity, publicity capabilities, and narrative direction. Below, representatives from MEME Coin will talk about their personal opinions.

The carrier of MEME is very important

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

In the encryption market, we often hear the myths of sudden wealth created by various MEMEs, but in fact there are only three MEME projects in the top 100 in market value: Dogecoin, PEPE, and Shib. Here we talk about the first two first (Although Shib is essentially an imitation of Dogecoin and also uses the classic Shiba Inu image, Shib’s success comes more from grassroots culture and external environmental factors at the time, so it is not discussed here. Expand), the biggest thing in common between Dogecoin and PEPE is the use of the classic MEME image. Arendt once said that only things that are hotly discussed and have a broad public base will have strong vitality, and everything else will They are all short-lived and not worth mentioning. This sentence is also very suitable for MEME Coin. The breadth of the audience determines the upper limit of MEME Coin (of course, this does not determine the lower limit). During the last bull market, there were also many popular non-Shiba Inu MEME Coins, such as Pig, Feg, and various animal tokens. Why didn’t they survive? The main reason is that the factors that drive the public to buy them are the FOMO emotions brought about by various myths of sudden wealth and the herd effect. The MEME elements of such tokens basically come from some pictures or stories created by the project team. The real audience for these MEME elements is very small. Token holders just want to make profits and may not be interested in these unfamiliar MEME elements at all. Once the market goes bad, these MEME Coins will not be far from returning to zero.

Both Shenfangou (the image source of Dogecoin) and PEPE are MEME images that have been popular on the Western Internet for more than ten years (because they are inconsistent with Chinese MEME culture, so when we pay attention to these tokens, they are often soaring. , but the emergence of Pogai in 2023 also confirmed the importance of the MEME audience). Various spoof emoticons about them have long been deeply rooted in the hearts of the people, and the audience is extremely broad (it is also easy to get some influential celebrities), and the natural virus The infectious power of spread is also extremely strong.

Why is this PEPE successful?

We also mentioned above that the PEPE we are currently familiar with is not the first PEPE Coin, so why did the early PEPE (there was an earlier PEPE inscription on BRC 20) not succeed? In fact, the fundamental reason is the lack of publicity capabilities. Excellent publicity capabilities can not only accelerate the success of MEME Coin, but also determine the lower limit of MEME Coin.

For example, in our daily lives, the more household-known a brand is, the more it invests in advertising. For any product, its advertising audience can be divided into high-frequency consumers, low-frequency consumers, and non-consumers. The mechanism of advertisings action on these three types of people is different. The logic of advertisings action comes from four aspects - informing, persuading, reminding, and strengthening. The promotion logic of MEME Coin should also be the same, to consolidate community members and speculative buyers and bring in more potential buyers. Therefore, in addition to choosing the right carrier for MEME Coin, it is also important to use what kind of method to advertise it widely .

YBB Capital:读懂MEME,读懂Web3大众流行文化

The reason why PEPE can achieve success in a very short time is inseparable from the publicity method that is good at using human nature. Looking back at the PEPE part above, it is not difficult to find that these big Vs have quietly purchased PEPE tokens long ago, driven by the bundling of interests. These big Vs began to promote it hard. There are also plans for domain names and tokens that have been planned for a long time (there are relevant personnel in the team to connect with the exchange), causing the price and currency holding addresses to rise crazily in a straight line in the short term, coupled with PEPE’s ready-made Magic emoticons were used in conjunction with these good news for daily publicity. The two complemented each other and started the explosive spread of the virus. How bright a fire can burn depends on the amount of firewood. PEPEs fire will definitely burn like a prairie fire. Therefore, PEPE’s emergence is not simply due to good luck. It is not simple how the project parties cooperate with the planning to form the ultimate herd effect without misfiring. (Readers who are interested in this point can compare the early related tweets of the two accounts $pepe.BRC-20 and PEPE.)

A MEME who doesn’t want to be a MEME——Shib

Going back a few years, I remember thinking that Shib was going to fail. Because in the Web3 circle, it is almost impossible for an imitation disk to challenge OG. But then Shib gave me a hard slap in the face. Looking back at Shibs counterattack now, I still think it was a miracle caused by multiple factors. If you put aside some luck factors (economic big release, Musk (related tweets, etc.) to analyze Shib. I personally think that what is special about Shib is its excellent community culture and bold attempts in narrative direction.

All dog-based MEME Coins actually have a fatal problem. Since these tokens are all simple creations of Dogecoin, the degree of homogeneity is very serious. The MEME expressions created by the project team and the community are spread on social networks. The power is also very weak, as mentioned above their real audience is very small. Shib also faces this problem. Whether it is recognition in Western Internet culture or celebrity effect, the dog has the absolute upper hand. A second-generation Shib Inu cartoon picture will definitely not be the Dogecoin killer.

Then the narrative direction of Shib can only be ecological. A MEME Coin with Swap, cross-chain bridge, Layer 2, and metaverse expectations, will it suddenly become a hit? Although this development direction of Shib is accompanied by many doubts, I personally think that this is the correct and only direction that can continue its vitality as a Dogecoin killer.

Conclusion

The market for MEME Coin is always full of temptations, but it also comes with high risks. According to CoinMarketCap statistics, there are 1,467 tokens in the MEME track. If we only count the top 300 projects by market value, there are only 9, and the success rate is even less than one percent. At present, with the evolution of MEME Coin and the addition of inscription MEME, the complexity of choice is also increasing. If you really want to buy some MEME Coin today, then you have to do some special culture about Crypto and Western MEME culture. After doing enough homework, a potential MEME project should also have at least one aspect of cultural identity, publicity, narrative, and community.

Original article, author:YBB Capital。Reprint/Content Collaboration/For Reporting, Please Contact report@odaily.email;Illegal reprinting must be punished by law.

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